Japan to set new 10,000-spectator cap in sports stadiums

Tokyo, Jun 16 (EFE).- Japan plans to limit the entrance of spectators to sports stadiums to a maximum of 10,000 people, whatever the situation of the pandemic, a measure expected to be applied to the Tokyo Olympics.

The minister in charge of response against the pandemic, Yasutoshi Nishimura, announced Wednesday this new stricter measure on public attendance at mass events, which was endorsed by the committee of experts that advises cabinet ministers.

The maximum of 10,000 people in stadiums will be in force in July and August, coinciding with the celebration of the Tokyo Olympics.

Organizers have not yet decided whether and to what extent they will allow the public to enter the venues of the competitions, but if spectators are allowed access, government’s guidelines must be followed.

The new limit set by the executive is stricter than the one in force until now, which allowed the entry of 5,000 people or 50 percent of the total capacity of sports facilities.

Under the new guidelines, a maximum of 10,000 spectators could enter the Tokyo Olympic Stadium, while up to now 34,000 people were admitted, half of its 68,000-seat capacity.

The limit will apply throughout the country, including in prefectures where the state of health emergency that is in force in Tokyo and other major Japanese regions is lifted until the end of the month.

The medical expert who leads the panel that advises the government, Shigeru Omi, said at a press conference that it is a “tougher” measure aimed at reflecting the risk involved in mass attendance at sporting events.

The Tokyo 2020 organizing committee also plans to decide before the end of the month on public attendance at stadiums, having already announced its ban on foreign visitors to Japan during the games to prevent the spread of coronavirus infections. EFE


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